We all knew someone was going to say it, but how appropriate that it was Toronto Mayor Rob Ford and on April Fool’s day.
News networks remain an integral part of the information and communication age, bringing audiences a fair and balanced view of the world around us. The official launch of Sun News Network in Toronto is a wonderful addition of another network offering high quality and distinctive local content. We welcome you to Toronto and we wish you much success.
The it to which I refer is the depressing phrase Fair and Balanced. Depressing because those of us who care about language and dialectic are watching what could be the arrival of Fox News to Canada, much in the way one might have observed the approach of the ship delivering the first strain of the bubonic plague. At least in this case the intelligent would have the necessary resistance, for what scant benefit it presents.
Yes, I am going to be a nasty snob about this. If it happens that you get all of your news from Fox News, and that you prefer it that way, I am not going to argue with you concerning the merit or lack of merit of this choice. The industry standard is in any case low, and has been for an age. The disease of this degenerating body we call Network News has never been ideological in origin, it has always been industrial-capitalist. The liberal rag derives its funds from the same folks as do our fair and balanced friends. Even PBS is to a large degree funded by private corporations. The news is owned and manufactured by the combines which make everything else in our cartel world, from the toaster in your kitchen to the bombs falling in Libya. The left-right media battle is a marketing strategy, and while there is indeed ideological range across the outlets, news reporting tends to be the same at every point on the spectrum. That is, superficial and sausage-like, manufactured in a way that facilitates the prime directive: to sell your eyes to advertisers.
Yet somehow, Rupert Murdoch did manage to debase what was already at the time of his arrival on the scene base. Perhaps his intention was comedic, in which case one could argue he has elevated an industry. Not the news industry, however. His so-called news network has much advanced village idiotry, agitation-propaganda, and the modern theatre. I am all for it, only have the decency to call it by these names — or, if you don’t like these, find something else that fits. The hopelessly dim alone fail to see that Fox News exists to make people angry and afraid so that their bulk energies may be invested against the political enemies of the paymasters. I hope the Sun News Network does not mean to follow this diseased model. If it does, then on April 18 a dirty and dishonest cargo will arrive on a north shore.